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Supreme Court of Indiana
December 20, 2001, Decided
Cause No. 49S02-0105-CV-231
[*1052] ON PETITION FOR TRANSFER
This consolidated appeal addresses [**2] a number of issues of insurance coverage for environmental cleanup liabilities.
Factual and Procedural Background
Dana Corporation is a manufacturer of automotive components. Sixty-three of its facilities, located in nineteen states, have become the subject of governmental or third-party actions resulting in substantial environmental cleanup costs. Allstate Insurance Company is the successor in interest to Dana's excess liability insurer in the relevant years. When Dana's liability insurers denied coverage for the cleanup, Dana sued. Several trial court rulings produced an interlocutory appeal in 1997. Hartford Accident & Indem. Co. v. Dana Corp., 690 N.E.2d 285, 288 (Ind. Ct. App. 1997), trans. denied. In that appeal, the Court of Appeals held: (1) Indiana law governed construction of the policies; (2) the term "suits," as used in the policies, included "coercive and adversarial administrative proceedings"; and (3) the term "damages," as used in the policies, included "EPA or state-mandated cleanup and response costs." Id. at 294, 296, 298. In general, these holdings meant Dana was entitled to indemnity for cleanup costs, subject to policy [**3] limits and exclusions.
After the first appeal, Dana settled with all of its insurers except Allstate. Although Dana's coverage of at least some cleanup costs was established, a number of issues remained unresolved. These were the subject of a second round of motions resulting in the trial court's entry of judgment for Dana in the amount of $ 4,599,314.30 as to Dana's facility in Old Forge, Pennsylvania, one of the several sites. Although liability as to the other sites remained unadjudicated, the trial court certified the Old Forge judgment and a number of earlier rulings on partial summary judgments for appeal pursuant to Trial Rule 54(B). Both Allstate and Dana appealed. Each challenged three of the trial court's rulings and defended three others. The Court of Appeals addressed all six in detail, affirming two and reversing four. Allstate Ins. Co. v. Dana Corp. 737 N.E.2d 1177 (Ind. Ct. App. 2000). This Court granted transfer.
[*1053] Standard of Review
Full case includes Shepard's, Headnotes, Legal Analytics from Lex Machina, and more.
759 N.E.2d 1049 *; 2001 Ind. LEXIS 1115 **
ALLSTATE INSURANCE COMPANY, solely as successor-in-interest to Northbrook Excess & Surplus Insurance Company, f/k/a Northbrook Insurance Company, Appellant (Defendant Below), v. DANA CORPORATION, Appellee (Plaintiff Below).
Subsequent History: [**1] The Docket Number of this Case has been Corrected January 10, 2002.
Prior History: Indiana Court of Appeals Cause Nos. 49A02-9909-CV-666, 49A02-9906-CV-430. APPEAL FROM THE MARION SUPERIOR COURT. The Honorable David A. Jester, Judge. Cause No. 49D01-9301-CP-0026.
Allstate Ins. Co. v. Dana Corp., 737 N.E.2d 1177, 2000 Ind. App. LEXIS 1833 (Ind. Ct. App. 2000)
Disposition: Trial court's judgment was affirmed, in part, reversed, in part, and cause was remanded.
coverage, policies, property damage, occurrence, insurer, groundwater, limits, personal injury, exhausted, trial court, contamination, rated, aggregate limit, policy period, triggered, premiums, damages, site, remuneration, contends, parties, costs, own property, ambiguous, cleanup, privacy, summary judgment, landowner, partial summary judgment, property damage coverage
Civil Procedure, Summary Judgment, Entitlement as Matter of Law, Appropriateness, Judgments, Partial Summary Judgment, General Overview, Genuine Disputes, Materiality of Facts, Insurance Law, Claim, Contract & Practice Issues, Policy Interpretation, Real Property Law, Environmental Regulations, Liabilities & Risks, Contractual Relationships, Commercial General Liability Insurance, Exclusions, Owned Property, Ordinary & Usual Meanings, Ambiguous Terms, Unambiguous Terms, Plain Language, Energy & Utilities Law, Oil, Gas & Mineral Interests, Water Rights, Construction Against Insurers, Environmental Law, CERCLA & Superfund, Enforcement, Cleanup Costs, Landlord's Remedies & Rights, Eviction Actions, Torts, Intentional Torts, Defamation, Invasion of Privacy, Public Disclosure of Private Facts, Intrusions, Hazardous Wastes & Toxic Substances, Toxic Torts, Contracts Law, Defenses, Ambiguities & Mistakes, Contract Interpretation, Excess Insurance, Obligations, Types of Insurance